For years I did yoga, loved the exercise aspect of it, but didn’t really get into the practice of it. I bought DVDs and tried to practice at home, I went to Crunch Fitness and went to Vinyasa Flow classes a couple of days a week and also tried various yoga studios by buying Groupons. Nothing seemed to stick, I would enjoy yoga while I was there but I needed motivation to go do it. So when my personal life seemed to be falling apart and my world was shattering, I really had nothing that was pulling me out of my slump. I tried praying, but I was just angry. I tried meditating, but I couldn’t focus. I tried acupuncture, it actually helped but I needed something more.
Then I decided to try a hot yoga class. I really wasn’t excited about it, but I really needed to find my focus and I thought maybe if I sweat enough, I will. I have always found peace in exercise, so maybe hot yoga will make me sweat out my stress and find my peace.
It wasn’t hard to find a place to go since there is a Corepower Yoga studio, a few blocks from where I live, which made it a no brainer. It had been awhile since I had done any kind of yoga and I had never tried hot yoga. I was nervous. Right away, I realized I didn’t have everything I needed. So as I signed up for class I bought a hot yoga towel to put on my mat. I’m so glad that I did. I was not prepared for the amount of sweat that was about to come pouring from my body.
I’m not going to lie, the heat was intense, but I was raised in Texas. When you grow up playing sports outside in the Texas summer heat, you can acclimate to anything. At the beginning of class, the instructor gave us a moment to set our intention. This was new to me. I’ve always tried to clear my head while doing yoga, but I had never set an intention. This was the first step to changing my life. The second thing was, I focused on myself and where I was in each yoga position. I ignored what others were doing and just focused on myself, on my intention and the excessive amount of sweat pouring from my body. The sweat really just felt as if I was letting all my stress go. By the end of class, I was sweaty, exhausted, exhilarated and crying. I laid in final Shavasana and just let the tears come down my face. This was the moment my life changed.
Now I don’t just practice hot yoga, I practice at home and have started to venture out to other studios as well. Although, hot yoga, changed my life. It is what started my practice. I crave it, I work my days around my practice. I have found peace within myself, within my life, within my circumstances, because of the day I decided to sweat it out in hot yoga. When I yoga, I am calm, I am centered, I am focused. When I meditate, I can breathe. When I pray, I am not angry.